You probably use contribute to several Apache projects. But do you know what goes on behind the scenes at the ASF? Besides all the work of the 200+ project communities, the ASF has an annual budget of about one $million USD to fund the services our projects use. How we manage providing these services – and governing the corporation behind the projects – continues to change and improve.
There’s a huge amount of volunteer energy that flows around Apache’s Annual Member Meeting every year. Old members and new alike come together and brainstorm all sorts of new ideas, both organizational and technical – and we have plenty of online… discussions, let us say. There is an amazing amount of energy from a lot of very smart people, and when we focus this energy, we make real improvements to the Foundation and sometimes in some of our projects.
As we’ve grown, keeping a full shared understanding of all the details of membership and corporate operations has become much harder. We have some documentation, but we also still have a lot of tribal knowledge and decisions hidden in our mailing list archives. To understand the same things, we need to be able to see what rules or policies we’ve actually decided on – or at least written down.
So here is an overview of all the different roles that people can have with the ASF as either a Foundation or with specific Apache projects. In particular, I’m focusing on the specific agreements we make with individuals, or the explicitly posted policies that we expect people to abide by. For more information on how Apache works, see /dev, /governance, and Community.
How much do you know about the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) and the many Apache projects we host? Did you know we’re holding our annual Members meeting to elect our board of directors and new Members in just a few days?
I’m often surprised by the variety of basic questions and misunderstandings I hear in the software world about how the ASF really works. We’ve written plenty of documentation about the Apache Way and our governance, but let’s try a different approach. I’d like to interview myself to try to explain some things. Continue reading How Apache *really* works